Noblin activity of the knitting variety.

Including Noblin Designs, How to identify Noblins,
Advice on how to catch a Noblin, and How to keep your Noblin happy.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

I went to a wedding

and had a wonderful time.  I didn't take many photos but I did film some of the ceremony. I'm hoping some photos of me looking pretty will appear on facebook soon enough.

The clocks have gone back now and everywhere seems dark and gloomy. I'm looking forward to one week of work and then flying off to Japan.  I made a stupid mistake at work last week and felt like a cotton headed ninnymuggins for most of the weekend. Is there a point where you get to stop doing stupid things at work and feel like a real professional for a while? I don't know but I know I won't make that mistake again, I'll just make other ones.


Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Weekend in Dublin


Monday, October 17, 2011

Totally distracted

I've been totally distracted by Up For Hire Live.  I tuned in as I read that Lush will feature tomorrow.  It's fascinating me at the moment.  There are four young people, two of which are graduates.  They all want work and through this week will be shown progressing from minimum wage menial jobs through to being the CEO.  I feel real sympathy for Kirstie who feels cheated that she has put herself through university and now has no prospects.  She's worked menial jobs and is now frustrated and depressed.  Her first task was to be a clown at an amusement park.  I think that's a very difficult job unless you're naturally bubbly and relaxed around people.  She came across as feeling she had some kind of entitlement to a better job and let's be frank, that's what the govenment claims.  Two entrepeneurs in the audience dug into her and said they wouldn't employ anyone who wasn't willing to work in the warehouse. Well, I'm very fortunate as I'm not willing to work in the warehouse.  I was very lucky when I left university as it didn't take me long to get an entry level job in my chosen field.  I've had different jobs but there are some I'd have to think twice about whether I could go back to them if I ended up out of work.  Poor Kirstie is onto her second film clip and is now being shown to not be a team player.  I often claim to not be a team player.  These four young people are really having a hard time of it but at least some of them accept that these different experiences can teach them something.  Ooh, now Sasha is having an amazing strop as she was criticized.  I remember having a very high opinion of myself and finding criticism really hard to take.  Fortunately, I didn't get criticised often, haha! But I wouldn't shout and stomp away.  Russell Kane is talking plenty of sense, as is Stacey Solomon.  This is a great show. There definitely seems to be a theme of the young people feeling there is something unfair out there.  Perhaps this is the real problem, that they haven't had the chance to learn from a work environment and grow up beyond a kevin and perry attitude.


Saturday, October 15, 2011

Ishbel scarf

 There are over 10,000 Ishbels on Ravelry. I'm not saying I'm the last person to cast-on but I'm happily behind the trend.  I finished the st-st section very quickly, only getting confused at the end as odd numbered rows were WS where I'm used to them being RS.  I just managed to squeeze out chart A using the grey I had left from the hat.  Now, I'm using red and have finished Chart B. I can't really tell how big it is as the needle I'm using is short.

 I've had two parcels in two days and two trips to the post office depot to fetch them.  One reunited me with Bob, a blanket which I'll show you again tomorrow.  The other was some rainbow coloured yarn for a new commission.  I'm looking forward to winding it and swatching it this afternoon on the train to see my friends.
Did I mention:
わたし は じゅいちがつなのか にほん に いきます!!!!

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Friday, October 14, 2011

This week's classes

I went to yoga on Tuesday and enjoyed it.  It seemed slightly easier than last week but I still need to work on my triceps if I don't want to end up nose butting the floor. Japanese last night was a challenge.  I found the room too hot, the other students frustrating and judgemental and generally was in a muff. I rushed my dinner beforehand and was thirsty so maybe it was all just a bad mood.  I've been doing my homework most days and that's really made a difference.  I can tell the time quite well and write hiragana more quickly.  I was annoyed at myself that I still struggle with あります and where to put に and が so next week I'll make sure I shop less and sit down and eat properly.  I'll revise a few chapters this week, too.

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Wednesday, October 12, 2011

The hat is ready for Japan

I finished the Ishbel beret but I haven't bothered blocking it.  I like the way it hangs at the moment (great photos, me!) and I want to push on with the matching scarf/shawl.  I've cast on and am working through a billion increases until I have a trillion stitches. I'm not worried about the angora in my eyes anymore, I'm pretty sure it's too much computer work that upset them so I'm trying to cut down on playing facebook games.  I'm lining up a new project for Let's Knit so I'd like to finish the shawlette really quickly. 

I had a Japan related upset yesterday.  It appears the Ghibli museum will be shut for maintenance for the whole time I'm there, reopening on the day I leave.  I nearly cried.  I think I'll just have to remember that this won't be the last time I visit Japan and next time I can plan the holiday around that museum rather than the sumo.   I am pleased to say that I've ordered sumo tickets, received my Japan Rail Pass Exchange Order and can start booking hotels.  It's just under four weeks until I leave and I'm very excited.

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Sunday, October 09, 2011

Hat progress and tidying up

I decided to have a tidy up of my hair, makeup and jewellary in preparation for xmas i.e. I want to buy myself lots of new stuff.  As with all the other times I've tried to tidy, everything gets worse before it gets better. I started yesterday and I've set myself a deadline of finishing by the end of today otherwise I'll just live with hairclips on my floor - I am that naughty. I've already been reunited with many pairs of earrings that I had forgotten about or thought I only had one of.  This is better than having to buy new ones!

I'm nearly finished on the Japan hat.  I'm not sure whether to finish the top in red or just keep going with the grey. I'm not working on it everyday for fear of fluff but I actually think it's using the computer too much that is killing my eyes.  I didn't log on at all yesterday and my eyes are much less red today.  I'm going to buy some eye drops and try to blink more and play less adventure world.

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Friday, October 07, 2011

This week's classes

On Monday, I drove to and from work and felt very fat and lazy for it.  I decided to go for a walk around the village and stopped to have a look at the local notice board.  There was an advert for a new yoga class that was starting the next day. I decided to give it a go as my street dance class isn't running this term and I haven't been for a run since the race. I'm told yoga really complements running as it stretches out all the muscles and builds core and upper body strength.  The class was really fun (and turned out to be free for the first go) so I'm going to sign up for a block.  I've been feeling for a long time my arms are puny and my core is pretty puny too.  I managed to participate in the whole class though and didn't collapse under my own body weight in downward facing dog even though we must have formed that position a hundred times.

Last night I went to my second Japanese lesson of the year.  It was very exciting as we started off with talking about food and looking at pictures of food.  These included a speciality of hiroshima, sponge cakes in the shape of maple leaves.  Maple leaves change colour to a beautiful red in Autumn and form the focus of autumn leaf watching in Japan.  Hiroshima and Miyajima are supposed to be particularly good places for koyo watching and now I know how to ask for custard filled sponge instead of the standard red bean paste flavour.  I've eaten red bean paste before and although it wasn't unpleasant enough to stop me from finishing the brioche it was hiding in, it will be nice to have the choice. 

After discussing how dangerous it is to eat rice based sweets, we were introduced to some new verbs.  eating, drinking, watching, listening, working, studying, reading, jogging.  Jogging's a good one - jogingu o shimasu.

あさごはん を たべます
eating breakfast

going to sleep

わたし は ごご じゅじはん に ねます
watshi wa gogo juji han ni nemasu
I go to bed at 10.30pm.

Shimasu means to do and can be added to other words:
しごと を します
べんきょお を します 
working and studying

わたし は にほんご の べんきょお を します
I study Japanese!

There was plenty of vocabulary to learn and I needed to revise times too so plenty of work to be done this week.  I made a homework chart and bought stickers to motivate everyone to study every day.  i felt a bit mean for harassing Helen-san last week so hopefully this made up for it.

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Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Sore eyes still

My eyes are sill sore and a bit bloodshot from all the fluff and rubbing.  I think I'll leave the hat for a few days and give my living a good hoover, as there is still plenty of ambient fluff. I have a contact lens check tomorrow and I don't want to be told I can't wear lenses as a result of angora fluff in the air. I'm also a bit worried that even if I finish the hat, I won't have the interest in making the matching shawl.  Hmmm.

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Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Fluff up my nose...

...and up in my eyes and on my clothes. Knitting with Angora 50 is mostly pleasant, and the finished fabric is lovely, but the shedding is making me cry.  Or at least rub my eyes and itch my face.  So I decided I could at least protect my clothes by making a project wrap. I've read that women used to make them back in the day and it seemed like good sense.

I started with a skirt from Thailand that I never wear (it makes me look very stumpy).

It has a pleat so there's even more fabric in there than it looks like.
I ripped open all the seams (carefully) and removed the elasticated waist.
I then cut a strip about as wide as needed to cover my from my belly button to my knees when sitting down.  Ok, that's not very helpful, it was about 70cm wide.  I used the whole length of the skirt but because I wanted to keep the whole pattern but it's longer than needed. I then spent a long time ironing and hemming the three edges that weren't already hemmed.  Phew, it was hard work.  I'm not an experienced sewing machiner but I managed to sew three straightish lines and rethread the needle a few times.

The finished rectangle folds up into a lovely parcel.
I can now keep my hat and pattern book in it.  When I open it up, it acts as a lap blanket/clothes protector. And it's pretty.

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Monday, October 03, 2011

Wedding blankets!

 The newlyweds arrived back to glorious July sunshine in October so we all met up for a barbecue.  And blanket presentation! My sister and I managed to give them away when we saw how pleased the recipients were.  I didn't even consider stealing mine back before I left.
 Of course, it wasn't the best weather for snuggling under a blanket but we tried anyway.
Their living room is split level which makes it excellent for photographing illusion knitting. My sister's boyfriend had a slight eureka moment and claims to have been able to see it clearly for the first time.

The blankets were 3 squares by 4 and although I didn't measure it, nearly 5 feet long.
We haven't decided if we're going to knit each other our own ones for xmas, but we are considering it. Although, each blanket took over 2 months of solid work so we'd have to start very soon for this year.  They are totally brilliant though.

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